The Philadelphia Phillies, who are still looking to add more pitching depth, have shown recent interest in free-agent lefty Matt Moore. And they’ve finally got their man as they agree to a major-league with Moore.
Moore, 31, pitched in Japan last year. He was an All-Star with the Tampa Bay Rays in 2013, but he struggled in the majors with San Francisco and Texas in 2017 and 2018. A knee injury limited him to just two starts with Detroit in 2019.
He made 15 starts in Japan last season and recorded a 2.65 ERA and a 1.118 WHIP in 85 innings.
Even as he worked on signing catcher J.T. Realmuto and continues to work on filling a hole at shortstop, a reunion with Didi Gregorius remains a possibility.
Phillies president of baseball operations Dave Dombrowski has made it clear he’s looking for pitching depth, likely in the form of bargain veterans.
Earlier this week, the Phillies signed veteran right-handers Bryan Mitchell and Ivan Nova to minor-league deals. They will both get a look in big-league camp.
Heading into camp, the Phillies starting rotation includes Aaron Nola, Zack Wheeler, and Zach Eflin in the top three spots. Spencer Howard and Vince Velasquez will work at the back half of the rotation, but nothing is guaranteed. Velasquez can also work out of the bullpen. Nova will push for a spot. So, too, could Ranger Suarez, the only lefty in the group.
Adding someone like Moore to the pitching mix could be big because he’s left-handed.
Pitching depth will be very important in 2021 as teams will look to protect arms, after last season’s shortened season prevented pitchers from building their normal workloads.
Jake Arrieta, now a free agent after pitching for the Phillies the last three seasons, will throw for teams in Texas on Friday. The Phillies will head to Texas and take a look as well, but that’s not unusual. They send a scout to just about every free-agent showcase.
Let’s hope Moore can bring some “Moore” hope!